Mickey Page, the grove’s research coordinator and farm manager, tells why the inputs had to be reduced and how he altered the production program. “If you don’t have the money, you can’t spend it,” Page says. “It seems to be working.” He says the trees now “look almost normal.”
Among other things, Page greatly reduced herbicide use and now controls weeds primarily by discing and chopping. He believes the discing incorporates organic matter into the soil.
“We actually made a profit last year,” Page said. “Not everybody can say that … It makes me wonder, if we can maintain them (trees) long enough, can they acquire, within themselves, some sort of immunity to the disease (HLB)?”
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